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How to remortgage: a quick and simple guide

The idea of remortgaging can seem scary or complicated, but it doesn’t have to be. In this quick guide, we explain how to remortgage, step by simple step.

Knowing how to remortgage can make the entire process feel a lot less daunting, especially if it’s your first time. Here, we’ll dive into the whats, whys, whens, and hows of switching to a new mortgage deal.

What does it mean to “remortgage”?

Before we explain how to do it, let’s talk about what it means to remortgage in the first place.

In short, it’s replacing your current mortgage deal with a new deal, either with your current mortgage provider or a different one. Not so scary!

Why should you remortgage?

There are a few reasons why you might want to remortgage:

  • Your current deal is coming to an end. This is the most common reason that people remortgage. If your deal is coming to an end and you don’t switch to a new one in time, you could end up on your lender’s standard variable rate (SVR). You’ll want to avoid this if you can, as it often results in paying significantly more interest than you were paying before.
  • You want to borrow more money against the increased value of your property. This is known as “unlocking equity” and gives you access to cash previously tied up in your home. You can use this money to fund renovations, invest in buy-to-let properties, or pay school fees, for example.
  • You want to overpay your mortgage more than your current deal lets you. Not all mortgage deals allow you to overpay, and some charge a penalty for overpaying your mortgage over a certain limit (usually 10% of your remaining balance). So switching to a deal with no early repayment charges could put you closer to that sweet, mortgage-free life.

When should you remortgage?

The best time to remortgage is when your current deal is coming to an end. We always recommend that you start searching around 6 months before your current deal finishes.

For instance, if you’re on a two-year fix, you should start thinking about your options at the 18-month mark. This will put you in the strongest position for finding the best deal without feeling rushed or pressured.

Note: If you’re planning on remortgaging early (as in, before your current deal’s expired) you may be charged an early repayment fee. It’s a good idea to speak to a remortgage expert (hint, hint) and run the numbers. It can sometimes be cheaper, in the long run, to switch and pay the associated penalties and fees — but usually, it’s better to stay put and wait it out.

And, of course, there are some other scenarios where remortgaging simply doesn’t make sense. This can include remortgaging to clear debt (often more expensive long-term) or when your remaining mortgage is too small.  

How long does it take to remortgage?

Generally speaking, finding and applying for a new mortgage deal won’t take that long, but you do have to factor in everything that happens after. You’ve got paperwork to fill in, processes to follow, and you may also need to have your property revalued if you’re changing lenders.

All things considered, the remortgaging process can take 4-8 weeks to complete, so give yourself plenty of time to get everything sorted.

How to remortgage your home — a simple 5 step guide

Now that we’ve covered what it means to remortgage and why and when you should do it, let’s look at how it’s actually done:

  1. Organise your paperwork. Before you start your search, dig out everything you’ll need for the application, including proof of earnings, proof of ID, loan documents, the lot. Here’s a reminder of what you should set aside in preparation.
  2. Start your search. Next, start looking for remortgage quotes online. Once you’ve found some you like, chat with a qualified mortgage broker (like Habito!) to get the ball rolling.
  3. Make your application. With your paperwork already organised (good job), you can make your application.
  4. Appoint a conveyancing solicitor (if you need one). If you’re sticking with your current lender, this is what’s known as a “product transfer,” so you won’t need any additional legal work. But if you’re switching to a new lender, you’ll need a solicitor to handle the transfer of deeds.
  5. That’s it! Your remortgage is done and dusted. All being well, you’ll get a mortgage offer you’re happy with, you’ll accept it, and everything is finalised. If you’re moving to a new mortgage provider, they’ll get in touch to confirm your old mortgage has been paid off and you’ll start making your new monthly payments to them going forward. Pretty simple.

How to remortgage in the UK with Habito

When you remortgage with Habito, we follow all the steps above, but we make things even faster and easier. We’ll find the best remortgage deal for you, and do all the heavy lifting of submitting and chasing up your application.

The best place to start is with our online remortgage calculator to see what remortgaging could save you. Once you’re ready to start the process, just answer a few questions to tell us a bit more about you and your situation, like whether you live in your property or let it out, and when your fixed term ends.

Once we have an idea of what you’re looking for, we set you up with your own remortgage expert. We’re a whole-of-market broker, so we have access to almost every mortgage deal out there (we even have access to some exclusive deals banks won’t offer you directly).

Your remortgage expert then takes the reins, doing all of the applying and following up on your behalf. Lender needs chasing for an update? We’ll do the badgering to keep everything on track. And with Habito Plus, we can take care of the legal work and property survey, too.

And the best bit? You’ve got a remortgage expert and a dedicated case manager by your side throughout. And, you can track the progress of your application in your online dashboard, right to the very end. Seamless.

Ready to remortgage with Habito? Answer a few quick questions to get started.

Ready to remortgage with Habito?

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Alex Winn

Mortgage Expert | CeMAP, CeSRE

Alex decided to become a mortgage broker after he used one to buy his flat. Was he inspired by the amazing service? No. He just figured he could do a much better job. Today, Alex leads one of Habito's biggest teams of brokers, giving people the expert, savvy advice they need to make buying their homes a breeze.

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